Berger: Hamilton’s move to Ferrari will be similar to Schumacher’s arrival at the team

Gerhard Berger believes the arrival of Lewis Hamilton could usher in a new era for Ferrari in both its sporting operations and beyond. 


Former Ferrari Formula 1 driver Gerhard Berger has heaped praise upon the Italian team’s decision to sign Lewis Hamilton for the 2025 season. 

Hamilton will leave Mercedes following the end of the 2024 season, bringing to a close an 11-year partnership with the German team. The seven-time world champion will replace Carlos Sainz to partner Charles Leclerc, establishing arguably the strongest driver pairing on the grid

“I have to congratulate Ferrari,” Berger, who spent six seasons with the Scuderia, told the Italian publication Corriere della Sera. “Hiring Hamilton seems to me the best decision ever. It’s a move I’ve been waiting for for a long time.

“Sometimes there is a need for an energetic change within a team. I am convinced that with Lewis, new skills, new technicians, a new way of making decisions will come to Maranello, driven by a motivation that everyone in the team will feel. Something similar to what happened when Schumacher arrived at Ferrari.”

It’s expected that Hamilton‘s move to Ferrari could result in an exodus of technical staff from Mercedes, with its performance director Loic Serra already rumoured to make the move to Maranello. Discussions are also ongoing as to whether Hamilton‘s race engineer Peter Bonnington will join the British driver at Ferrari.

In Berger’s view, Hamilton’s move to Ferrari could be revolutionary for the team — and not only in sporting terms.

“We are talking about the most important, consistent figure in modern Formula 1 not only in terms of results but also in terms of his following among fans,” said Berger.

“Lewis is a reference for a huge community that also includes people not entirely interested in racing. This puts him in a position unlike any other. If we combine this with the Ferrari brand, it means generating real power in financial terms as well.” 

How will Leclerc fare as Hamilton’s teammate? 

Hamilton joins Leclerc at Ferrari with the Monegasque having driven for the team since 2019. Leclerc agreed a contract extension in January with the team, so is set to drive alongside Hamilton until at least the end of 2027.

Berger believes that having Hamilton as a teammate will be a challenge for Leclerc, but one that the 26-year-old can use to demonstrate the full scope of his capabilities. 

“In some respects Charles may feel some nervousness because Lewis is a consistent driver on every front,” said Berger. “He is strong politically, technically, and has super experience. 

“On the other hand Leclerc is younger, he can find ways to travel on Hamilton‘s levels. Speed, no mistakes, strategy, tactics. All this will pose questions for him to answer.”

Charles Leclerc celebrates on the podium after winning the 2022 Austrian Grand Prix with third-placed Lewis Hamilton | REUTERS / Leonhard Foeger

It will not be Leclerc‘s first time driving alongside a multiple-time World Champion. He partnered Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari in 2019 and 2020, outperforming the four-time champion across both seasons in which they raced together.

“Similarly, partnering Hamilton at Mercedes will provide Leclerc with the opportunity to prove his abilities,” said Berger.

“When you want to be the best, you are forced to compare yourself with anyone. If Charles can beat Lewis – compete with or surpass him – he will get an extra boost of confidence, a new awareness.”

Jasmine Hughes
Jasmine Hughes
Experienced in digital content creation, Jasmine Hughes has written for a number of online publications, joining Total Motorsport in 2024. She previously served as FormulaNerds' Formula E Editor, leading coverage of the 2023 Formula E season. She has been watching Formula 1 since the age of 4, after falling in love with Fernando Alonso's blue-yellow Renault R25.
- Advertisment -


Carlos Sainz during practice for the 2024 Spanish GP | Scuderia Ferrari Press Office

Carlos Sainz hits out at Lewis Hamilton over unpunished Spanish GP move

Carlos Sainz believes Lewis Hamilton should've been given a penalty for his overtaking move that forced the Ferrari driver...
Max Verstappen during 2024 Spanish GP Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen warning to Red Bull and demands improvement

Max Verstappen demands Red Bull improvement as another tough race saw the reigning world champion have to really work...
Start of the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

LIVE F1 Spanish Grand Prix 2024 – Reaction as McLaren mistakes costly as Verstappen...

Welcome to Total-Motorsport’s F1 live coverage of the Spanish GP 2024. Held at the iconic Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, today’s race...
Lewis Hamilton during 2024 Spanish GP weekend | Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton brushes off furious Sainz after Spanish GP incident

Lewis Hamilton risked angering Carlos Sainz after claiming the Ferrari driver "left the door open" to overtake him during...
Lando Norris of McLaren after the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Lando Norris: McLaren easily had the best car at Spanish GP

Lando Norris believes Spanish GP victory should have been his as McLaren had the best car in Barcelona, but...
Red Bull Team Principal Christian Horner at the 2024 Monaco Grand Prix | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

Christian Horner warns of Norris danger to Verstappen after Spanish GP battle

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner warned that Lando Norris and McLaren are their strongest competitors following a nail-biting...
McLaren team principal Andrea Stella at the 2023 Belgian GP | McLaren F1 team

McLaren chief pinpoints where 2024 Spanish GP was lost

McLaren's team boss they lost the 2024 Spanish GP by Turn 1 as a poor start saw Lando Norris...
Max Verstappen, Lando Norris and Lewis Hamilton on the podium after the 2024 Spanish GP | Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

F1 Standings after 2024 Spanish Grand Prix

Max Verstappen showcased his racing prowess at the 2024 Spanish Grand Prix, clinching his seventh victory of the Formula...
Lando Norris during the 2024 Spanish GP weekend | McLaren

F1 Fastest Lap: Spanish GP 2024

The Spanish GP Fastest Lap award is given to the driver who posts the quickest time over one timed...
Lando Norris during the 2024 Spanish GP weekend | McLaren

F1 2024 Spanish GP: Driver of the Day

Lando Norris was crowned 2024 Spanish GP Driver of the Day, but couldn't land the biggest prize of all...
- Advertisment -